Prizes: A Rival for Nobel

Q. What is the world's top prize in humanities? A. The Nobel Prize for Literature. Q. Who gets it? A. The world's top writers. Q. Like Salvatore Quasimodo, Alexis Leger, Ivo Andric and Giorgos Seferiades? A. Huh?

The gentlemen in question—an Italian, a Frenchman, a Yugoslav, a Greek —are the generally obscure writers who won Nobel Prizes (worth $51,158 this year) between 1959 and 1963. In 62 years of Nobel-picking, the Swedish Academy of Literature has ignored an incredible array of logical candidates—Chekhov, Conrad, Frost, Hardy, Ibsen, Joyce, Sartre, Malraux, Moravia, Pound, Proust, Tolstoy, Mark Twain, Zola—not to mention the glaring...

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